Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Saturday's alright for fighting ... Part II

In the previous post, I covered the IABSM game. Once that was finished, we took a quick break and I set up a game of Chain of Command. I umpired the game. The scenario was the first of my larger Chain of Command campaign that I am trying to figure out for June 1941 in the Ukraine. The scenario was a Patrol scenario. For supports, the Germans had a Panzer III and an Sdkfz 222 as support while the Soviets had a Ba-10. I did not actually own a Ba-10 armored car but i substituted with what I had. I am now the proud owner of one of the Zveda Ba-10 armored cars that I just picked up in the shop where we had the game.

The players were Barclay and Adam for the Germans and Natan and Rob for the Soviets.

I am going to make this part of the greater campaign and position this as German and Soviet platoon 1. I posted a campaign map a few days back and this is the drive up the left hand side corridor.

What follows below is a highly biased report on the game that occurred.

June 23, 1941 Near Annowka Ukraine.
Mien Herr,
Yesterday I was ordered to assist a platoon of infantry in their advance towards the town of Annowka. They were supported not only by my Sdkfz 222 but also a Panzer III.

As we moved through a small village on the Way to Annowka, the Panzer III lead the way. The Soviets had placed an armored car, possibly a Ba-10, on the oposite end of the road from where we were entering. The Panzer III engaged the armored car. The two exchanged a number of shots and the armored car moved behind the cover of a small building. With a lucky shot, the Panzer III was hit and destroyed. The Germans were able to rush several squads on the table as well. They then brought our armored car up and we took cover behind the burning wreck of the Panzer III. We exchanged fire with the armored car and eventually immobilized the vehicle but we did not damage its main weapon.

The Soviets managed to move a squad forward and took cover behind a fence line. These troops proved to be very stubborn. We assisted the infantry and opened fire on them and managed to first wound then kill their squad leader. Later, the Soviet Platoon Sergeant took command of this unit. We managed to locate and kill this man as well.

The infantry advanced to the right of us and moved a squad into a farm yard on the right hand side of the road. A second squad moved to guard the gap between the the hill and the wheat field on that side.

The Soviets began to move two squads forward on our left and were coming close to flanking our positions. We maneuvered the 222 in front of a small copse of trees and opened fire on these new threats killing another squad leader. The Soviets deployed behind the fence line were proving to be a strong nut to crack and began to mount some casualties on our troops in the farm yard.


The squad in the farm yard had their squad leader wounded. The Feldwebel moved forward to help and was himself wounded.

Spotting a squad of Soviet infantry attempting to flank our right, the blocking squad moved forward to stop them. Next to my position another German squad moved through the woods to halt the advance of the Soviets on the left. The Soviets laid down a withering fire on the men in the trees. They took horrible casualties, including the leutnant, and were forced back.

The squad of infantry that moved to block the Soviet advance foolishly charged into the face of Russian bayonets. The squad was nearly destroyed to a man in the ensuing melee. We then attempted to cover the retreat of the remainder of the German forces. From my discussions with the survivors, the platoon lost nearly two full squads of men. I am not sure how the rest of the advance is going but things are definitely not easy in our sector of the front, regardless of what Signal is reporting.

It was a great game. I unfortunately did not document the game as well as I should have as I was running the game and attempting to teach the rules at the same time. The Soviets definitely won the game. The players wanted to try out the fisticuffs rule which is why the Germans charged the Soviets by the wheat field instead of using their firepower advantage on them. This is what ultimately broke the Germans. The Soviets managed to use a Chain of Command Die to keep from taking a morale test after loosing a Senior leader. The Germans, once they started taking casualties, kept loosing morale at an alarming rate until they just broke.

Given that this is a half ladder campaign, I guess this means that the patrol scenario needs to be run again. The Soviets did not lose that many men down. They did suffer lots of big men casualties though. What the Soviets did correctly was they went tactical and used the additional cover to rally the shock that they suffered until the units were nearly whole again. The Germans did not go on tactical as they were trying to press the attack. I think this was a mistake. The squad that charged the infantry aside, the other squad that was cut up badly, was the Germans in the woods. They were fired upon by two squads and the dice were with the Soviets.

I will update the campaign page shortly with what I remember of the results. I enjoyed the game. I just hope the players did too.


  1. Not a very auspicious start for the Germans, from the sounds of it. Running a game, teaching the rules, and trying to document it for your blog ... you were a busy fellow. Thanks for this report.

    1. It was almost overwhelming. I needed about another half dozen games under my belt before i should have tried it.

  2. Good read, our group need to choose between Chain of Command and the other big set


    1. Thanks. I really like Chain of Command. Having not played the "other" big set, I don't know how to compare them.

  3. Nicely documented and readable battle report, thanks!